Saturday, December 19, 2015

2016 Audiobook Challenge

2016 Audiobook Challenge
It's time for the 2016 Audiobook challenge. If you follow my page, you know I do this every year. This year is no different. 

Here are the rules (stolen from the Hot Listens page):

  • Runs January 1, 2016 – December 31, 2016. You can join at anytime.
  • The goal is to find a new love for audios or to outdo yourself by listening to more audios in 2016 than you did in 2015.
  • Books must be in audio format (CD, MP3, etc.)
  • ANY genres count.
  • Re-reads and crossovers from other reading challenges are allowed.
  • You do not have to be a book blogger to participate; you can track your progress on Goodreads, Shelfari, Facebook, LibraryThing, etc.
  • If you’re a blogger grab the button and do a quick post about the challenge to help spread the word. If you’re not a blogger you can help by posting on Facebook or Tweeting about the challenge.
Here are the levels (also stolen...I'm a thief):
  • Newbie (I’ll give it a try) 1-5
  • Weekend Warrior (I’m getting the hang of this) 5-10
  • Stenographer (can listen while multi-tasking) 10-15
  • Socially Awkward (Don’t talk to me) 15-20
  • Binge Listener (Why read when someone can do it for you) 20-30
  • My Precious (I had my earbuds surgically implanted) 30+
  • Marathoner (Look Ma No Hands) 50+
  • With my baby coming, I don't have as much time to listen, so I'm going to stick with last weeks level of Marathoner, and aim for 85+ books instead of 50.

    Feel free to join me by going here and signing up.

    Audiobook - Fourth Quarter Update

    To see the main page for the challenge go here. This challenge is about to end with the ending of the year, and here is my final update.

    My chosen level for this year is: Marathoner (Look Ma no hands) 50+. More specifically, I planned to read at least 85+ audiobooks, but after the last update, I increased it to 110. Lets go into how I've done for the final quarter:

    1. Bloodfire (Blood Destiny 1) - Helen Harper
    2. White Hot Kiss (The Dark Elements #1) - Jennifer L. Armentrout
    3. Mark of the Demon (Kara Gillian #1) - Diana Rowland
    4. Trial By Fire (The Worldwalker Trilogy #1) - Josephine Angelini
    5. Life After Death (Twilight #5) - Stephenie Meyer
    6. The Offer (The McGregors #2) - Karina Halle
    7. Steelheart (Reckoners #1) - Brandon Sanderson
    8. Wake (The Watersong Quartet #1) - Amanda Hocking
    9. The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #1) - Rick Riordan
    10. Second Grave on the Left (Charley Davidson #2) - Darynda Jones
    11. Third Grave Dead Ahead (Charley Davidson #3) - Darynda Jones
    12. Fourth Grave Beneath my Feet (Charley Davidson #4) - Darynda Jones
    13. Fifth Grave Past the Light (Charley Davidson #5) - Darynda Jones
    14. Sixth Grave on the Edge (Charley Davidson #6) - Darynda Jones
    15. Seventh Grave and No Body (Charley Davidson #7) - Darynda Jones
    16. Eighth Grave after Dark (Charley Davidson #8) - Darynda Jones
    17. November 9 - Colleen Hoover
    18. Sweep in Peace (Innkeeper Chronicles #2) - Ilona Andrews

    With the addition of this to my other quarters, I finish the challenge with a total of 111 audiobooks, meeting my goal. I'll add that I've read more than this because some I listened to some more than once within the year, but I didn't want to count them each time. To see my goodreads shelf with all the books, click here.

    I can't wait until the next challenge, though with the addition of a new baby in January, my time may be a bit strained. We will see.

    Did you participate in the challenge? How did you do?

    Thursday, November 5, 2015

    RRT: Bookshelves were made for Dreams

    Hey Everyone. How are ya?

    It's about time for another Random Rant Thursday. Typically, the books I like to read are all fiction, all the stuff of dreams and fantasy. The more unreal it is the more I love it, and my shelves are bursting at the seams at the moments with all my lovely books. (It’s about time to buy another shelf) I have everything on them from knickknacks to book marks, and am always looking for things to make them more pretty. One day, I’ll show them off, but that’s not today because I’m moving soon and everything’s all boxed up.

    Recently, I was contacted by to make a blog post of my dream literary collection from their site, and since they sell awesome antiques, and the things I love to pretty my shelves with, I figured why not?

    Books: has a ton of first edition books on sale, in addition to a ton of other books as well. After spending hours on the site, these are the ones I absolutely would love!

    Rudyard Kipling – The Jungle Book

    Charles Dickens – A Christmas Carol

    Arthur Conan Doyle – The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes

    Victor Hugo РLes Mis̩rables

    Bram Stoker – Dracula

    F. Scott Fitzgerald – The Great Gatsby

    Margaret Mitchell – Gone with the Wind

    I have a thing for pretty clocks (though you wouldn’t know it from my house.) and these are absolutely stunning. I can only imaging one of these on the end of my shelves, perhaps next to my shakespere collections, ro next to my historical fiction. Seems like a good place.

    I found myself getting sucked into this site, and eventually had to just stop with the site all together so I could get to some homework. I’d suggest you go take a look at what they offer. It’s much more than just books, they have paintings, furniture, jewelry, and more. It’s a great site for the collector, and for the person who just wants that one rare piece that makes things awesome.

    Thanks for allowing me to add my insight on my “Dream Literary Collection.”

    Monday, September 28, 2015

    Audiobook Second and Third Quarter Update

    If you're interested in joining, you still have time. The challenge began at the beginning of this year but they accept new people all year. Just go here and sign up.

    My chosen level for this year is: Marathoner (Look Ma no hands) 50+. More specifically, I planned to read at least 85+ audiobooks. Lets go into how I've done:

    For the first quarter I read a total of 25 books. Feel free to see my first quarter update here.

    Since then, I forgot to do my second quarter update, so this will be a combined 2nd and 3rd quarter update:

    Second Quarter:

    1.       Dead of Winter (The Arcana Chronicles #3) – Kresley Cole

    2.       Losing Hope (Hopeless #2) – Colleen Hoover

    3.       The Snow Queen – Hans Christian Anderson

    4.       Beautiful Bastard – Christina Lauren

    5.       Half Blood (Covenant #1) – Jennfer L. Armentrout

    6.       Dark Lover(Black Dagger Brotherhood)  – J. R. Ward

    7.       Slammed (Slammed #1) – Colleen Hoover

    8.       Addicted (Club Destiny 2.5) – Nicole Edwards

    9.       Kades Dark Embrace (Immortals of New Orleans #1) – Kym Grosso

    10.   Seduction (Club Destiny #3) – Nicole Edwards

    11.   Ruby Red (Ruby Red #1) – Kirstin Geir

    12.   Better Homes and Hauntings – Molly Harper

    13.   Maybe Someday (Maybe #1) – Colleen Hoover

    14.   Maybe Not (Maybe #1.5 ) – Colleen Hoover

    15.   Lick (Stage Dive #1) – Kylie Scott

    16.   The Interview (Office Party #1) – Andie Devaux

    17.   Infatuation (Club Destiny #4) – Nicole Edwards

    18.   Captivated (Club Destiny 4.5) – Nicole Edwards

    19.   Finding Cinderella  (Hopeless 2.5) – Colleen Hoover

    20.   Fearless (Fearless #1) – Francine Pascal

    21.   A Court of Thorns and Roses (A Court of Thorns and Roses #1) – Sarah J. Maas

    22.   Thirteenth Child (Frontier Magic #1) – Patricia C. Wrede

    23.   Wallbanger (Cocktail #1) – Alice Clayton

    24.   Succubus Blues (Georgia Kincaid #1) – Richelle Mead

    25.   The Professional (The Game Maker #1) – Kresley Cole

    26.   Siege and Storm (The Grisha #2) – Leigh Bardugo

    27.   Ruin and Rising (The Grisha #3) – Leigh Bardugo

    28.   The Beautiful Ashes (Broken Destiny #1) – Jeaniene Frost

    29.   Ugly Love – Colleen Hoover

    30.   An Ember in the Ashes (An Ember in the Ashes  #1) – Sabaa Tahir

    31.   Fallen Too Far (Fallen Too Far #1) – Abbi Glines

    32.   In Flight (Up in the Air #1) – R. K. Lilley

    Third Quarter:

    1.       Dark Heir (Jane Yellowrock #9) – Faith Hunter

    2.       Storm Born (Dark Swan #1) – Richelle Mead

    3.       Fixed on You (Fixed #1) – Laurelin Paige

    4.       Addicted to you (Addicted #1) – Krista and Becca Ritchie

    5.       Talon (Talon #1) – Julie Kagawa

    6.       Mud Vein – Tarryn Fisher

    7.       Never Seduce a Scot (The Montgomerys and Armstrongs #1) – Maya Banks

    8.       Confess – Colleen Hoover

    9.       First Grave on the Right (Charley Davidson #1) – Darynda  Jones

    10.   Yes Please – Amy Poehler

    11.   Switched (Trylle #1) – Amanda Hocking

    12.   Torn (Trylle #2) – Amanda Hocking

    13.   Ascend (Trylle #3) – Amanda Hocking

    14.   Half Bad (The Half Bad Trilogy #1) – Sally Green

    15.   Red Queen (Red Queen #1) – Victoria Aveyard

    16.   The Elite (The Selection #2) – Kiera Cass

    17.   The One (The Selection #3) – Kiera Cass

    18.   Magic Shifts (Kate Daniels #8) – Ilona Andrews

    19.   The Young Elites (The Young Elites #1) – Marie Lu

    20.   Magic Bites (Kate Daniels #1) – Ilona Andrews

    21.   Magic Burns (Kate Daniels #2) – Ilona Andrews

    22.   Magic Strikes (Kate Daniels #3) – Ilona Andrews

    23.   Magic Bleeds (Kate Daniels #4) – Ilona Andrews

    24.   Magic Slays (Kate Daniels #5) – Ilona Andrews

    25.   Magic Rises (Kate Daniels #6) – Ilona Andrews

    26.   Magic Breaks (Kate Daniels #7) – Ilona Andrews

    27.   Golden Son (Red Rising Trilogy #2) – Pierce Brown

    28.   The Coldest Girl in Coldtown – Holly Black

    29.   My Blood Approves (My Blood Approves #1) – Amanda Hocking

    30.   Fate (My Blood Approves #2) – Amanda Hocking

    31.   Queen of Shadows (Throne of Glass #4) – Sarah J. Maas

    32.   Flutter (My Blood Approves #3) – Amanda Hocking

    33.   Watch Me – Shayla Black

    34.   Naughty Little Secret – Shayla Black

    35.   Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass #1) – Sarah J. Maas

    36.   Crown of Midnight (Throne of Glass #1) – Sarah J. Maas

    Combined that means I have read 93 audiobooks. Therefore, I have already met and passed my goal of 85 audiobooks. I still plan to keep up my current progress, so I am looking to see if I can finish with more than 110 audiobooks. We will certainly see! For updates of my progress, follow my 2015 Audiobook Challenge shelf on Goodreads.

    Head on over to the hosts site to check out her progress, and check out other participants and to enter into a giveaway! Good Luck everyone on the Last quarter of the contest!

    Review: Fearless by Annie Jacoby

    Book: Fearless (Fearless #1)
    By: Annie Jaocby
    Published: July 15, 2014
    Published by: Self Published
    *this book was given to me in exchange for an honest review by the author*

    My Thoughts: Fearless was an interesting story about a woman who just wants to feel again, and the man who helps her.

    The Story: We follow Dalilah Gallagher, a former child art prodigy who was put down by an art critic and who now desperately wants to find her place and purpose, and find a way to see the passion in the world again. Struggling to find her muse again, or even to feel something, she spends her days modeling for other art students, and her nights trolling the bars and engaging in various acts with the strangers she meets. Soon, she runs into Blake Nottingham, a rich man who is obsessed with her, and who commissions a broke, but talented artist, Luke Roberts, to paint a nude painting of Dalilah. Blake wants Dalilah, but he's into some dangerous things. Things that Dalilah knows would ruin her forever. Dalilah is quickly intrigued by Luke, and wishes she can do something to help the artist succeed. She later realizes that only Blake can help Luke, and she will do anything to help Luke reach his dreams, even if that means getting involved with Blake. What she doesn't know is that Blake may have motivations of his own, and she must decide if she can deal with them.

    The Characters: I wasn't really a fan of our MC Dalilah. I understood her issues and motivations, and was very near to liking her, but then she would make quick decisions without thinking them through, and she began to make me think she wasn't even a person worth caring about. She seemed spoiled and stubborn and generally seemed as if she didn't care about herself, so I didn't want to care about her either. I was intrigued by our love interest Luke, but I never felt I got to know him enough to be sure. Blake was the only character I was sure I liked, probably because he was meant to be so unlikable, and devious, and I knew what to expect from him. He was a perv, and a stalker, and a devious, dangerous man, and he had secrets that scared even me. I kind of loved it.

    The Verdict: I give this story 3.5 stars. It was quite interesting, and I enjoyed seeing the cliffhanger. That being said, I couldn't really connect to the MC, and that made it difficult for me to connect with the story. Beyond that, it took too long in my opinion for me to reach the climax of the story, and once that happened, the story was over and I was left with said cliffhanger. Finally, bits of the story were pretty predictable, which made me unsurprised at the end. Still it was a great start to the series and something that definitely taught me a lesson. I would recommend this to those who would like a nice love story with a proportionate dose of sex and a danger hanging over everyone's heads.

    Monday, September 21, 2015

    Audiobook Review - Naughty Little Secret by Shayla Black

    By: Shayla Black (writing as Shelley Bradley)
    Narrator: Cindy Harden
    Length: 6 hours 5 min
    Audio Published:
    Published by: Listen Up Audiobooks
    *this book was given to me in exchange for an honest review by the author*

    My Thoughts: Naughty Little Secret was a book filled with secrets and heartache. It was a book that, once you suspended belief a bit, was quite interesting and ridiculously sexy.

    The Story: This story follows Lauren Southall, a divorcee' who is broken hearted, afraid of love, and completely jaded. She's also inappropriately interested in her boss/ex-husband's friend, Noah Reeves. What she doesn't know is that Noah is inappropriately interested in her too. Two years passes after her divorce, and Noah has a plan to win her heart. Unfortunately, everything doesn't always work out as planned. What ensues is an intense story that's at times frustrating and other times exciting.

    The Narration: Cindy Harden was a good narrator. At the beginning, her voice seemed a bit too breathless, but eventually I got used to it and settled in. She did a great job with the narration of the story and made sure we felt the correct emotions. I didn't quite like the male voices she made at times, but I could deal with them. I know from personal experience that I can really only make one male voice, so I felt okay with the few that she made.

    The Verdict: I give this one 3 stars. While I thought the story was beyond hot, I just couldn't connect with the characters, and the story itself required a bit too much suspension of belief. I just can't put myself in her position no matter how hard I try. In the beginning, Lauren seems way too desperate for affection from anyone with a male appendage, and at the same time as the story progresses she's too guarded, and seems to make stupid decisions. Beyond that, she had no confidence in herself, no confidence in others, and just basically no confidence at all. Noah's plan to woo her was an idiotic one, and I could see the writing on the wall at first mention of it. In addition, once everything was revealed, it took too much (in my opinion) to wrap things all up. Still, Shayla Black knows how to write a sexy scene, and the story itself wasn't bad. I really enjoyed it despite my misgivings about the characters. I would recommend this one to those who like erotica that requires a significant amount of belief suspension, but that fully involves a taboo fantasy many would never admit to having.

    Monday, September 14, 2015

    Audiobook Review - Watch Me by Shayla Black

    Book: Watch Me
    By: Shayla Black (Writing as Shelley Bradley)
    Narrated By: Sasha Dunbrooke
    Length: 4 hours
    Audio Published: August 4, 2015
    Published By: Listen Up Audiobooks
    *this book was given to me in exchange for an honest review by the author*

    My Thoughts: Watch me was a short, intense little book filled with seduction, temptation, and pure hotness.

    The Story: Watch me follows the life of Shanna York, a particularly obsessive professional ballroom dancer who has been proclaimed as the, "B***h of the ballroom." She goes through dance partners almost as fast as she goes through dance costumes and she believes winning is all that's important. Then, her dance partner gets videotaped in a couple compromising positions with a couple romantic partners of his, the whole scene is videotaped and was done in front of an audience, and the video-taper is trying to blackmail Shanna by threatening to show the video to the judges at the next competition. Shanna knows that such  an occurrence would ruin her chances of winning the competition with the conservative judges, and she can either pick a new partner yet again, setting her back with this year's competition, or she can find out exactly who is trying to blackmail her.

    Enter Alejandro Diaz, the owner of the club where Shanna's partner performed for said audience. Alejandro is a sexy Latin man who has wanted Shanna since he first met her. He wants nothing more than to melt her icy exterior and find out exactly who she is. When Shanna comes to him to request he help her find out who is blackmailing her, he comes up with the perfect plan, one that's equally beneficial for both of them.

    The Narration: From the first sentence, I loved the narrator. She really fits Shanna's icy personality and hidden softness. She also does a wonderful job portraying the hot and heavy moments so that the listener can really picture what's going on. Sasha even does a pretty good job with the male voices and the accents, and I thoroughly enjoyed listening to her.

    The Verdict: This is a book filled with steam, exhibitionism and lust. Still, I had some misgivings, there was a portion near the end where things seemed to rushed and too HEA too soon. I don't believe the feelings were rushed between the two main characters, but I do believe the decisions as a result of those feelings were rushed. I give this book 4 stars. I would recommend it to anyone who likes erotica with sexy foreign men and ice queen women getting brought down to their secretly mushy selves.

    Saturday, August 29, 2015

    Review: Death Wish by Megan Tayte

    Book: Death Wish (Ceruleans #1)
    By: Megan Tayte
    Published: February 7, 2015
    Published By: Heaven Afire

    My Thoughts: This book was given to me by the author in exchange for an honest review.

    The Story: This story follows Scarlett Blake, a girl who recently lost her sister in what looks to be a suicide. Scarlett misses her party girl sister, and turns to the last place her sister stayed to find out what happened. There, she finds out that not all is as it seems. Her sister had secrets, and Scarlett may be the only one with the power to find out what happened.

    The Characters: At first I really liked Scarlett, and felt bad for her. I understood her reasoning to want closure in the wake of her sister’s death.  However, as time went on, Scarlett became a bit annoying in that she constantly did stupid things, and I never understood why.  Despite her protestations, she seemed a bit suicidal and like she never thought of the repercussions of her actions. The secondary characters are really what made this story. There were two male interests, one of which I liked a bit more than the other, and a best friend who I absolutely loved.

    The Verdict: I thought this book was pretty okay. It was unlike any other story I had ever read. There was a mystery aspect as we tried to learn what happened to Scarlett’s sister, and as we tried to find out what was going on with Scarlett herself. We don’t really find out what’s going on until very late in the story and for that reason, I continually got frustrated. Once we found out, I had more questions than answers. I was hoping for more information. Still, the book wasn’t too bad. I would give it 3 stars. I would recommend this story to those who like YA mysteries with a paranormal edge and a bit of romance.

    Monday, May 18, 2015

    Audiobook Review: Captivated by Nicole Edwards

    Book: Captivated (Club Destiny #4.5) - Unabridged
    By: Nicole Edwards
    Narration: Mark Chesterfield and Lily Savage
    Published: March 17, 2015
    Published By: Blackstone Audio
    Length: 4.1 hours

    My Thoughts: Finally after hearing of the story between Lucie and Kane in the background of all the others, we get to read it for ourselves

    The Story: Lucie lied to Kane, not telling him that he was the father of her daughter, or that anything even transpired between them. Now, she has finally told him the truth, and she's sure he wants nothing to do with her besides being in his daughter's life. Kane, on the other hand, has always liked Lucie, and despite being supremely pissed at her for keeping something like this from him, wants to make everything right, beginning with a family trip to Hawaii.

    Narration: The Narration of this one was okay. Both characters did a good job of bringing the story to life. Lily's voice was slightly husky which brought a seductive edge to the story that I liked. Mark, too, did a good job.

    Verdict: This is a novella, so it was short. In the past, Nicole filled her novellas with lots and lots of intimacy and sex but not much else. Thankfully, this one had more storyline, and I appreciated it. It was a good read. I think I will stop this series at this book. I'm just not interested enough in the characters in this or any of the other stories to care how they end up. I give it 3 stars.

    Monday, May 11, 2015

    Audiobook Review: Infatuation by Nicole Edwards

    Book: Infatuation (Club Destiny #4) - Unabridged
    By: Nicole Edwards
    Narration: Florence Luptak and C. J. Mills
    Published: March 17, 2015
    Published By: Blackstone Audio
    Length: 9.6 hours

    My Thoughts: Nicole Edwards brings us deeper into the world of Club Destiny with this installment, showing us that though we think we know everything about it, we don't.

    The Story: We met Tag Murphy a few books ago. He's the lawyer for Club Destiny and he was recently "hired" as the "third" in the relationship between Samantha and Logan. Unfortunately, because it doesn't constitute an actual relationship, he feels like something is missing from his life. Enter McKenna Thorne, the owner of an internet magazine that focuses on kink. She's about to do a story on Club Destiny, and Tag Murphy is just the guy to show her around. Unfortunately, old issues with the club have not yet disappeared, and new issues quickly arise bringing McKenna into the inner workings of the Club's inner circle. Soon, she must fight not just for a relationship with Tag, but also to save the Club, and to protect herself.

    Narration: Florence was great at narrating this story. She seemed to really get into the scenes and portrayed them, and the various accents beautifully. C.J. on the other hand was okay. His narration of the hot and heavy scenes were decidedly un-hot, but his narration of the various accents was pretty great. Still, I find that due to the change in narration with each story, the various carryover character personalities become a bit skewed with each story. It's a bit unsettling, but I got over it.

    Verdict: This story had a bit less heat than the other's, but it made up for that missing piece with more story, a fact I found refreshing. I also loved the inclusion of McKenna's posts. After a while of the excessive sex scenes, it's nice to see more story that has a bit more substance. This book was much better than the others. I give it 3.5 stars.

    Monday, May 4, 2015

    Audiobook Review: Seduction by Nicole Edwards

    Book: Seduction (Club Destiny #3)
    By: Nicole Edwards
    Narrated by: Ava Erickson and Patrick Leigh
    Published: February 24, 2015
    Published by: Blackstone Audio - Unabridged
    Length: 8.8 hours

    **This audiobook was received from Audiobook jukebox in exchange for an honest review**

    My Thoughts: First things first, the abs on that cover model are gorgeous.... *sigh*. Okay so we have another book from Nicole Edwards that I like so much better than all the others.

    The Story: This book picks up right where Temptation left off, and overlaps a few events in Addicted. It follows Ashleigh, a friend of Samantha and Sierra from the previous books, and Alex, a friend of Logan, Luke, and Cole from the previous books. We saw him on the sidelines in the previous books, but never had much interaction with him. Now, he gets his own story.

    Alex has been into Ashleigh for a long time, but as she is 12 years younger than him, he had stayed away for a while. Now though, they're both grown up, she's moved back to town, and he can't stay away. He has secrets though, ones that she may not like, and she has some as well, ones that may make him look differently at her if he knew. This story is so much better than all the others because there are more challenges to overcome, more storyline, and there's more buildup.

    Narration: Ava Erickson and Patrick Leigh were the best narrators of this series so far. They seemed to get into the moods of the story, though I liked Patrick a bit more because Ava sounded a bit strange when she was trying to make the male voices. Still, the pacing was good, and I really liked them as narrators.

    Verdict: I give this one 3.5 stars. I really liked that though it was definitely erotica, there was more to the story than just the sex, at least at the beginning, and all the side stories were actually needed for this storyline. I do believe the story itself was a bit too long. There was a point where practically all the challenges were overcome, but there was still a ton of story left, and it seemed the author couldn't help but give us more heated scenes. Then an issue came back around and it made the story seem a little unbalanced. Still, the story was good. I was thinking about stopping after the previous novella, but decided to give this one a chance. I liked this one more than all the others in the series, and it gave me more hope to continue the series.